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Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship

Making citizens’ lives easier


Free movement of EU citizens

Christian, who is Luxembourgish, met Natalia, who is Spanish, while on an Erasmus exchange in Sweden. Now that Christian has finished his university studies, he wants to live with her in Spain. But he wonders how this can happen, because he does not speak Spanish and he doubts that he will quickly find work in the small village where Natalia lives.

When he needs to register after living in Spain for the first three months, will the authorities accept his explanation that he receives €600 every month from his parents and that he can live on this amount? Or will they require him to prove that he has a higher or steadier income?

Which action(s) did the 2010 EU Citizenship Report foresee?

Facilitate the free movement of EU citizens and their third-country family members:

  • by enforcing EU rules strictly, including on non-discrimination,
  • by promoting good practices and increased knowledge of EU rules on the ground and
  • by stepping up the dissemination of information to EU citizens about their free movement rights

What progress has been made?

  • Following bilateral exchanges with the Commission, 16 Member States have modified their law or announced amendments to ensure full transposition of the free movement directive. Regarding unresolved problems, the Commission has launched infringement proceedings where needed. Commission action has helped resolve 90% of open free movement cases.
  • A study on the evaluation of the application of EU free movement policy to be launched in early 2012.
  • A guide on free movement was published 17 October 2010.
  • A study to be used as basis for an Impact Assessment of possible EU initiatives in the area of free movement of workers has been launched and is expected to be finalized by the end 2011/beginning 2012.

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